You need to be very careful when you drive a car or any automobile vehicle. There are many risk factors you have to consider and many key points you have to keep in mind. Often, you ignore these factors and then have to bear cathartic consequences.
One such factor is your tire. Your tire’s health is crucial for your own health. You should keep your tires up-to-date and exclusively focus on keeping them as well-maintained as possible. When you’re at it, direct your attention towards your tire treads and make sure these rubbers are not worn out.
What Is A Tire Tread?
A tire tread is a barrier between your tires and the unforgiving concrete. The rubber makes sure the friction between your vehicle and the road is smooth. It helps your vehicle stay safely on the road and avoid hazardous accidents. When a tire is about to wear out, the treads are often the first indicators. A bald tire is a one-way ticket to a dangerous accident, and you should avoid taking this ticket.
Knowing about the tire tread is the first step to ensuring your tire’s safety. There are four components of a tire tread, including:
- Ribs: These are a collection of tread blocks.
- Grooves: These deep valleys run concurrently with the tread blocks.
- Blocks: These are the uplifted portions of the tires that directly come into contact with the concrete.
- Sipes: These are the channels that are snugly fitted in the tread blocks and are responsible for the smooth friction between the tires and the road surface.
Prerequisites For Tire Tread Measurement
Measuring tire treads is an easy task if you perform all the steps carefully and make sure to keep safety above all else. There are a few preliminary steps you must take before beginning the main task.
These steps will help you save time and make your process easier.
- Check your tires’ life: If they showcase a plain, bald surface, they are already expired. You should accept that your tires cannot carry you anymore and replace your tires immediately. If you come across an expired tire, you cannot move forward and measure the tire treads. It is mainly because you won’t have any tire treads, or the ones that are left are on the verge of disappearing.
- Measure inflation: If your tires still need to be ready to leave you, go ahead and check the air pressure in them. If they are deflated, you must re-inflate them properly before going ahead.
- Grab a tool: Your tool will vary depending on the method you choose. If you are going with the dollar test, you will need a coin you generally use as a penny. You can use a gauge to measure your tread depth easily. The instrument is generally inexpensive, and you won’t have trouble finding it online or in a store.
How Do You Measure Tire Tread Depth?
Theoretically, tire treads need not be measured if you drive on a dry road. But a dry road is only imaginary, and measuring tire tread is an essential task for ensuring your tire’s health. It is a relatively easy task that hardly requires any experience. Moreover, it won’t take much of your time either.
There are four methods that can help you measure your tire’s tread depth. You can choose the method that fits your requirements or use two concurrent methods to be on the safe side.
- The dollar test: This method is probably the easiest way to measure your tire’s tread depth. Just pick up a coin, insert it into the tire’s tread groove, and observe the coin. If more than 2/3 of your coin is dipped inside the groove, your tire is no longer of any use to you. However, if that’s not the case, your tire has passed the test.
- The finger test: This test can gross you out if you are not used to the oily smell. Just like the penny test, dip your forefinger between the grooves. If you can directly feel the wear bars, your tire has to be thrown away quickly. But if you feel a rubber barrier between your fingertip and the wear bars, your tire can continue to be a layer between your vehicle and the road.
- Search for the tire wear indicator: Your tire tread contains various uplifted portions commonly referred to as “tread blocks.” These blocks can help you detect the wear your tires have accumulated. If your tire’s tread is level with these indicating blocks, you need to stop using your current tires immediately.
- Use a tread depth gauge: A tread depth gauge is an instrument that can help you measure the tread depth easily and effectively. You can use both the digital and manual depth gauges in the same way. Just place the pointer of the gauge over the tread groove and push the barrel of the groove inside until it touches the tread blocks. Remove the gauge and check the measurements on your scale. If you are using a digital gauge, the screen over your gauge will show you the measurement. And if you are using a manual gauge, you will have to read the scale. To obtain a precise reading, repeat the procedure for additional tread blocks. If the scale shows a measurement above 3 mm, your tire is safe to use.
Why Measure Tire Tread Depth?
Tires are the objects that keep your vehicles moving safely. As you drive, the tire tread ensures smooth friction between your tires and the road. When you drive on a rough or slippery road, it is vital to make sure your tires are in good condition. For snowy roads and thin surfaces, your tires need to have a solid friction capacity.
In order to prevent accidents, you need to make sure that your tire tread is thick and smooth. If it gets shallow or thin, your tire is a hazard to your life. By measuring your tire’s tread depth, you prevent those hazards and track the shelf life of your tires.